Conversation with the Artist: Patrick Feaster and Dario Robleto, The Menil Collection, October 21

On October 21, 2014 at 6.30 pm Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts at the University of Houston, presents a conversation with artist Dario Robleto and sound media historian Patrick Feaster at the Menil Collection. Prior to Thomas Edison’s groundbreaking invention of sound recording and playback technology in 1877, the ephemerality of sound meant that it only existed in the moment of its creation. To “record” sound before this time meant it appeared as oral or written descriptions or musical scores. In 2008, Patrick Feaster, a researcher and educator specializing in the history and culture of early sound media, and his colleagues revolutionized the field of historical sound recording by suggesting that attempts to record sound waves as visual tracings almost two decades before Edison’s breakthrough could be “played back” today as sound. In this discussion with Dario Robleto, Feaster speaks about his work and their recent collaboration on “playing back” the earliest nineteenth-century attempts to visually record the human pulse and heart. For more information visit:

On display at the Menil Collection: “Dario Robleto: The Boundary of Life is Quietly Crossed” examines the psychological and emotional ramifications of crossing unknown boundaries whether in space, the sea, or through exploring the human body by linking two remarkable undertakings in the 1960s: the space race and development of the artificial heart. Commissioned and developed through a research residency with the Menil Collection and the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts at the University of Houston, the exhibition is the culmination of Robleto’s research realized as an installation that includes new sculptures by the artist, rare historical recordings, and objects from the Menil Collection and archives, along with a series of public programs.